7 January 2021

James Stokes is relishing his second spell with London Irish - and he's keen to continue to build on an impressive start to life back in Exiles colours.

Stokes - who returned to the Exiles last month after playing for Miami Sun in the new format World Tens Series competition in Bermuda - scored twice in Irish's last outing prior to Christmas, a 26-17 victory over Pau in the European Challenge Cup - before the enforced two-match break owing to COVID-19 protocols.

Speaking as the squad returned to training at Hazelwood earlier this week, he said: "I'm loving being back here.

"Nothing has really changed too much - all the boys have been really welcoming.

"There's a great atmopshere around the club, so it's been amazing to be in and amongst it once again."

On his brace of tries against Pau, Stokes added: "It was pleasing to score the two tries against Pau - especially in the new stadium as well.

"It's an incredible set-up at the new stadium, and we can't wait to get back playing there in front of our fans as soon as it is deemed safe to do so."

Irish return to league action against Harlequins in the Gallagher Premiership on Sunday - and ahead of that match, Stokes had a message of thanks for the London Irish faithful, who will again, sadly, be unable to attend the fixture this weeknd owing to the current national lockdown measures in place.

"We've obviously been blown away by the support we've received from the fans over the last few months, during what have been really tough times for everyone," he said.

"They've stood by us incredibly throughout this pandemic and we can't wait to see them back in the stadiums as and when it's allowed."

Ad Space